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First Gov  

September 25, 2000

H.R. 4899 - Asian Pacific Charter Commission Act of 2000
(Rep. Gilman (R) New York)

While the Administration shares the policy goals enunciated in H.R. 4899, the Administration believes the bill's establishment of a new government-funded commission is unnecessary and therefore opposes the bill. The U.S. Government, through the Departments of State, Defense, and the Treasury, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and other agencies, is already pursuing the tasks identified in this legislation and consulting widely with various non-governmental organizations, think tanks, and academic and other experts on the region.

Furthermore, the concept of an "Asian Pacific Charter" could be perceived by other countries as a unilateral U.S. effort to dictate the shape of emerging regional organizations, such as the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum. We would not want to jeopardize the bipartisan, long-term effort undertaken to build these institutions. The resources required to establish the bill's new commission could be better devoted to continuing and expanding existing U.S. multilateral efforts in Asia.